While President Obama's visit to Intel's manufacturing facility in Chandler, Arizona may be a huge boon to the chip firm, it is slightly less of a boost to over 1,500 construction workers who have been asked to stay home for security reasons, without pay, during the day of his visit.
SAN FRANCISCO--While President Obama’s visit to Intel’s manufacturing facility in Chandler, Ariz., may be a huge boon to the chip firm, it is slightly less of a boost to over 1,500 workers who have been asked to stay home for security reasons, without pay, during the day of his visit.
Disgruntled contract workers have complained to local television media that the loss of a day’s pay is significant to them, though Intel’s spokespeople have brushed it off as having nothing but “short term impact.”
While some may assume that one day of unpaid leave is hardly something worth complaining about, in the context of President Obama’s drive to showcase “American Productivity” –laid out in his Tuesday night State of the Union address—it is a little ironic and unfortunate.
The President has put a high premium on American jobs, telling the nation America was “as competitive as we’ve ever been,” and laying out a blueprint for keeping and boosting employment in the U.S. Indeed, part of the President’s plan includes eliminating tax cuts for companies who invest in jobs abroad, while offering a 20 percent tax credit to companies moving jobs back stateside.
Intel’s massive $5-billion manufacturing facility in Chandler--due to be completed in 2013--certainly qualifies as part of that effort, but with Intel declaring another quarter of record profits and revenue last week, is it really too much trouble for the tech giant to give its blue collar employees a paid day off?
*update* An Intel spokesperson has said the contract workers will have the hours of work lost today rescheduled, and thereby make up any lost day of pay. He compared the situation to a day of bad weather or other natural impediment which would have halted work for the day.